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Holi: Why we should all celebrate the festival of colour

Neela Debnath

Holi 300x225 Holi: Why we should all celebrate the festival of colourThis week thousands of people across India celebrated Holi, the festival of colour. Holi is also a celebration of the start of spring and involves people throwing coloured powder and water at each other. There is a sense of merriment and inclusion to the whole event. Everyone and anyone is welcome to take part and the divisions of age or gender or social status fall away.

As we leave winter behind, perhaps we too should be celebrating the end of seasonal affectative disorder and scraping ice off windscreens and long nights. Frankly, seeing snowdrops and daffodils and blossoms on trees just doesn’t cut it anymore.

We lament rubbish British weather, so why not embrace spring with explosions of colour? Let’s all actively bid farewell to winter for another year and even if it rains we can hold an umbrella in one hand while we throw powder and paint with the other. Or we could hold it in a warehouse or even the Turbine Hall in the Tate Modern and turn it into an interactive art installation at the same time. We need to celebrate the fun of spring and the promise of summer that comes after it.

There are some Holi festivals held in Britain but we need more. We need Holi to remind us that it won’t always be this dark and that the cold won’t last forever. We should all get involved and douse each other in colour. We go paintballing regardless of weather conditions, so why not hold a Holi festival? It’s the less painful, less competitive and messier version – it’s probably cheaper as well. Either way, let’s put winter back in the attic with the Christmas decorations.

Richmond-upon-Thames Council is holding Holi celebrations this weekend. For more details visit www.richmond.gov.uk/holi

Image credit: Getty Images

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  • grumpy_old_ben

    Doesn’t this article completely ignore the fact that we already have Easter, with its symbols of the coming of spring? We need more daffodils, not imported celebrations 

  • Tom Harlow

    Yes we all need systemic and environmental industrial dye poisoning.

  • http://twitter.com/leonora1 Jane Ennis

    No, I rather like the idea of a festival of colour…..daffs and snowdrops are beautiful (the daffs are coming up in my garden right now!) but they aren’t very brightly coloured……the hyacinths, however, are brighter, including some deep red ones…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YKFVNMTFCGXSFNIXUHEIY2SAVI ki

    You know why we don’t?
    Because we are an established nation with our own traditions and don’t need to go culture shopping every time the seasons change.

    You could always go back for a swift bout of dye poisoning once a year, it’s not necessary for the entirety of Britain to be poisoned as well is it?
    Or you could just eat a Chocolate egg.


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